Medicare Supplement (Medigap)

Posted:July 20, 2015

Medicare Supplement (Medigap) policies are sold by private insurance companies and pay for all or some of the costs that Original Medicare does not cover. If you have Original Medicare and a Medigap policy, Original Medicare will pay its share of the Medicare-approved amount and after that the Medigap policy will pay its share. Medicare Supplement policies can help pay for health care costs like copayments, coinsurance, deductibles and even coverage when traveling outside of the U.S.

If you are considering enrolling into a Medigap plan, it is important to know that following.

  • You must be have both Medicare Part A and Part B.
  • In addition to the Part B premium that you pay Medicare, you will also be paying a monthly premium to a private insurance company for your Medigap policy.
  • You can buy a Medigap policy from any private insurance company that is licensed to sell in your state. Note that it is illegal for anyone to sell you a Medigap policy if you have a Medicare Medical Savings Account (MSA) plan.
  • Medicare Supplement plans are guaranteed renewable even if you have deteriorating health.  The only way you could be cancelled is due to non-payment of premium.
  • Medicare Supplement policies sold after January 1, 2006 are not allowed to include prescription drug coverage.  If you want drug coverage, you can join a Part D plan.
  • Medigap policies typically do not cover vision, dental, hearing aids, long-term care or private-duty nursing.

In 2015, there were ten different Medigap policies available for purchase: A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N. The chart below, found on medicare.gov, shows what the different Medigap plans have to offer.

Medicare Supplement Chart - Retiree Corner

To search for and compare costs of Medicare Supplement policies in your area, please visit: Medigap Plan Search.